Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Book Review: Argentina: Enchantment of the World


Argentina: Enchantment of the World,
This is a book which put out by scholastic in 2007 and written by Jean Blashfield  It is a fairly good geography of Argentina.  I has plenty of pictures which talk about some of the wonders in Argentina.  It talks of the water falls, and the high mountains, of the different zones.  One of the things I did not know about was the cave of the hands in Southern Argentina.  This impressed me.  (It is a theme at the first of the movie Croods where they imply the hand means “no”.) 
This book is very thorough, from talk about the animals, to the people, to the landscape, to the history.  It talks about everyday life, including mate, alfajores, carne asado and empanadas.  It misses talking about dulce, but it does point out that over 90 percent of Argentines are of European descent.  The mestizo and indigenous populations are small.  It mentions a large middle class, but then a third of the population live in poverty.   It mentions the slums or villas.  It talks about the love of sport, including soccer and polo.  
ON thing I didn’t like about the book is its portrayal of Che Guevara as a hero.  It only says he thought Communism was the way to go, and does not mention  the in fact he was affiliated with a murderous  dictatorship and murdered people himself. 
It does an adequate job of talking about los desaparecidos (the disappeared) and the history of dictatorships in Argentina.  It includes a little piece on butch Cassidy, which also seems out of place.  It also handles the Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas) War.

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